Second-year College of Medicine student Saimanthra Ganesh reports that Northeast Ohio Medical University’s Palliative Care Interest Group (PCIG) has found a way to stay engaged with its local community in a small but meaningful way: by “adopting” two units within Hattie Larlham – a nonprofit organization in Mantua, Ohio, that takes care of children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Thirty-five NEOMED students are paired up individually with a specific resident of Hattie Larlham. Each month, the students send a colorful greeting care on an appropriate theme. In February, it was a Valentine. Back in August, students designed their own watermelon card and in September, a “Back-To-School” concept was created!
Oroshay Kaiwan, a first-year College of Medicine student, said, “Through this opportunity, I have made a new friend and it gives me great joy knowing that I can brighten someone’s day.”
Lauri Molnar, the volunteer coordinator of Hattie Larlham, said, “Students who contributed their time and talents to make cards truly brought smiles to the adults and children we support. COVID-19 has limited the integration in the community for those we serve with intellectual and developmental disabilities this past year at Hattie Larlham group homes and our long-term care facility. Getting a handmade card brings the community to them at home.”